Mentorship programme launched to help new businesses succeed

Lihle Mtshali

Lihle Mtshali

Global statistics show that 50percent of new businesses fail within the first two years of start-up.

To curb this trend, Deloitte's Women's Leadership Initiative, the Businesswomen's Association (BWA) and Business Partners are running The Succeed Programme, which will give about 40 woman entrepreneurs the skills to keep their businesses afloat for longer than the initial two years.

Woman entrepre-neurs are invited to apply to be part of the programme, which has been running on a small scale under the auspices of the BWA since 2004.

"We did not want to reinvent the wheel," said Nicolle Weir, corporate finance manager at Deloitte.

"We wanted to take on a project that already had a lot of promise and add our skills to it."

Applicants must be the controlling shareholder in their business; have a business older than six months but younger than five years; employ fewer than 10 people; or have a turnover of less than R5million.

Successful candidates will be matched with skilled advisors according to the needs of their businesses. Each entrepreneur will meet with her advisory team four times during the year, with follow-ups in between.

The closing date for applications is April 7 and application forms and details are available at